The Pantry

By the time I get to the kitchen during the week there is no time for a quick run to the store for an ingredient I might be missing. A well stocked pantry is crucial; no one can just whip something up if the basics are not to be had. Here are things I make sure to keep on hand:

Soups and Stocks
Vegetable, chicken and beef stock/broth
Condensed cream of mushroom soup
Creamy corn, sweet potato or butternut squash soup
“Better Than Bullion”

Dry Goods
Barilla Plus pasta (multi-grain with added protein and omega-3)
Basmati, Jasmine, Arborio and regular old brown rice
Farro (spelt)
Bulgar wheat
Steel cut oats
Grits
TVP textured vegetable protein

Canned Goods
Kidney, Black, and Cannelini beans
Diced tomatoes
Ro-Tel (chopped chilies and tomatoes)
Enchilada sauce
Coconut milk
Artichokes in brine
Tuna
Tomato paste

Things in Bottles and Jars
Sundried tomatoes (I get them both dried and packed in oil)
Roasted red peppers
Capers
Peanut butter
Olive oil (a cheaper grade for saute and a really good one for salad dressings and over veggies)
Canola oil
Peanut oil
White wine, red wine, rice, cider and balsamic vinegars

Dried Fruit and Nuts
Tart cherries
Cranberries
Apricots
Prunes
Walnuts
Almonds (sliced, slivered and whole_
Pecans
Peanuts
Sunflower seeds

Garlic. Lots of Garlic
Potatoes
Onions
Squash, in season

Whew, that’s quite a list, but honestly, that’s what I have in the pantry this very moment.
Of course, I didn’t go out and buy all this at once. Just add a couple cans or packages each week when you shop. You’ll be surprised how quickly you have everything you need.
I am quite fortunate to have a really deep closet at the edge of the kitchen to use for this purpose. Maybe one day I’ll even outfit it with cool shelving and storage. If you don’t, you’ll have to decide what is essential for your food style.

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